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Jane Brody: "We Must Address Futile Treatments"

Posted Aug 18 2009 10:19pm
Intoday's New York Times, Jane Brody writes: "In all the discussion ofhealth care reform, there is one issue that has received short shrift but has the potential to save billions of dollars and untold suffering if it is effectively addressed. I’m talking about futile treatments at or near the end of life."

An excerpt: "In addition to their high cost, common life-prolonging interventions can result in a host of debilitating or costly complications, like repeated infections, mental deterioration, serious drug reactions and persistent pain and discomfort. That doesn’t even include the distress experienced by family members tending to loved ones hooked up to myriad tubes and devices."
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